Vladimir Putin: Thank you very much, Mr President for the invitation. I am glad to have another meeting with you. Previously we met in Moscow and other Russian cities (we had our first meeting in Sochi). I can say without exaggeration that a good basis has recently been created for the development of Russian-Bulgarian relations in all areas.
The atmosphere of interstate relations has significantly improved and I think it is natural because following a period of decline in our relations there is now an awareness in Russia and among our partners that this has been a mistake and that we can and must develop our relations on a new basis, on the basis of genuine mutual interests in the field of political interaction, in the economic field and in maintaining our military potentials.
We welcome the development of Bulgaria’s relations in every field with the European countries, with the European Union, with the NATO states, and we expect that in the process the interests of Russian integration into European and international affairs, including a qualitative change in the relations between Russia and the North Atlantic bloc, will be taken into account. All that provides a very good basis for the development of traditional friendly ties between Russia and Bulgaria. And I absolutely agree with you that it is profoundly symbolic that the visit of the Russian delegation to Bulgaria is timed for the 125th anniversary of the liberation from the Ottoman yoke. This is our history. This is the common heritage of Russia and Bulgaria. We cherish it in Russia and we are profoundly moved by the reception accorded to our delegation in Sofia, and we value the fact that the Bulgarian people have such an emotional and warm feeling about our common history.
We have many questions of a pragmatic character, as you have put it, but we have been able to discuss in some detail the entire range of our interaction in the world and in economic affairs.
Thank you very much.